Winter has Arrived – Gamay to the Rescue!

[Note to my readers: I wrote this post a few days ago when Spring was on the wane.]

It has been been winter in the Callen household in two ways. First, the summer solstice is on its way and so San Francisco has turned bone chilling. Second, sweet Cleo, my husband’s assistance dog has taken ill and seems to be dying. Sadness all around. I even lost interest in food and wine!

Then, the tide turns. Well, not exactly but I move into a state of acceptance; cherishing the time I have left to hug my precious pup. Dogs teach you how to be in the moment and in their waning days those lessons are most potent and poignant.

When I was able to eat a meal again, I chose comfort food- a farmhouse recipe for baked chicken with lots of onions and paprika served off buttered egg noodle with English peas. Decided it was time to have wine again and so since it was Cru Beaujolais (a Morgon) that I tasted in a Parisian bistro that launched my wine journey, decided to have Gamay – served slightly chilled, of course.

The 2014 Christal Fleurie we enjoyed was made by  Alain Coudert’s Domaine de la Roilette and is the one that is intended to be fun but hardly frivolous. And it was. Lively fruit on the palate but not tasting like fruit juice; you knew by the other flavors (was that thyme? Violets? a whiff of perfume?) that popped that this was wine with good acidity to match my meal –and delicious to boot. This is the Fleurie you drink while Roilette’s Tardive Fleurie is in the cellar clocking in the 10 years needed to express its full glory.

In the words of the producer: “Christal is the exact opposite of Tardive! It comes from two granite parcels and the vines are much younger (25-30 years). The grapes produce something fruitier, so it’s very easy to knock back on a hot summer day or for an apéritif.” The Christal is particularly lovely in 2014, with very pretty, ripe, round fruit on the palate balanced with brisk acidity.”

Despite the cold of this almost-Summer day, the Christal did the trick. I then glanced at the mantle and spied a sign I found two years ago that reads:

Wine makes everyone hopeful.”

I guess it does.

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4 responses to “Winter has Arrived – Gamay to the Rescue!”

  1. I’m sorry for your grief. I was there, too, not so long ago. It is hard to say goodbye to any member of the family. I am glad you were able to enjoy a glass of wine, and then to write about it, too. Find your hope in the little things.

  2. Catherine Pyke says:

    What a beautiful piece, CJ. Thanks for showing us how to find peace and poignance through difficult times. Sending love, Catherine

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